Power Outage in Atlanta Impacts Travel in Boston

Travelers headed to Boston's Logan Airport are being urged to check their flights after a power outage in Atlanta caused significant delays and cancellations across the country.

The sudden power outage caused by a fire in an underground electrical facility brought Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International to a standstill at about 1 p.m. Sunday, grounding more than 1,000 flights just days before the start of the Christmas travel rush.

By 9:55 p.m., Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed tweeted that power had been fully restored.

While power has been restored to the world's busiest airport, the travel woes are expected to linger for days at U.S. airports, including Logan. According to the Boston Globe, at least 16 flights had been canceled on Monday morning. Click here to check your flight's status.

The backlog left holiday travelers like Nicolai Goroviskii feeling less than festive.

"I'm tired. I want to sleep. I want to go to hotel and sleep," said Goroviskii, whose flight was delayed out of Logan.

"It's been a mess," added Max Petrie.

Sydney Williams was hoping to be in Orlando, instead, her mom was trying to find another flight.

"She spent a lot of money and a lot of planning to go to Disney and it's like a waste being here," Williams said.

Travelers heading to Atlanta were not happy with the cancellations.

"That’s where I have to go, and I’m a nervous wreck right now," said passenger Lisa Aversa.

"The next available flight out was Sunday, Christmas Eve. I’m disappointed having to pay $350 to get home today," said passenger Brent Pendrak. 

According to Pendrak, his original airline had no availability until the holiday. He paid out of pocket to change airlines and get home sooner. 

"If you get stuck, you get stuck. We’ve got coats and it’s Christmas time. You suck it up," said Rose Bezanson, who was flying home through Atlanta with her sister. 

The delays out of Logan were even worse for international flyers.

"They told me the next available flight would be the 21st and I wouldn't get there until the 22nd," said Luzmia Lihonde, who was traveling to Haiti. "That is unacceptable. I have a funeral I need to attend to."

Eddy Gonzalez told NBC Boston that he couldn't get a flight to Guatemala until Friday, which would mean he would miss his own wedding.

"I go to the supervisor and she says, 'nothing, we can do nothing at this time,'" Gonzalez said.

One man who landed in Boston Monday morning said his flight was awful and overpacked.

"When I left people were laying on top of the baggage carousel sleeping, all over the floor," said Chris Cruthrids, who traveled to Boston for work. 

He flew to ATL for a connecting flight to Boston and got stuck on the tarmac for hours last night. 

"Oh, it was brutal," Cruthrids said, "Especially middle seat because then you’ve got two people, and they had three of the biggest guys sitting next to each other. It was horrible." 

Back in Atlanta, Delta is said to be the hardest hit with its biggest hub operation located at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta.

Robert Mann, an aviation consultant and former American Airlines executive, said it likely will be Tuesday before Delta's operations return to normal, and for passengers "it could be most of the week" because there aren't many open seats on other flights in the last week before Christmas.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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